The most Popular Posts of the past seven days.

Jun 16, 2019

New word (at least to me)


 It showed up in a N.Y. Times Maureen Dowd column this morning, and I don't know that I had ever see the word before...though it dates to the 1600's!

"mendaciousness"----Can you guess who Dowd was describing when she used it?


[ men-dey-shuhs ]


telling lies, especially habitually; dishonest; lying; untruthful: a mendacious person.
false or untrue: a mendacious report.

Jun 15, 2019

Father's Day

Happy Father's Day, Dad. As always, I miss you deeply.

     I was at The Alabama Department of Archives and History much of the day for a symposium put on as part of the year-long observation of Alabama's Bicentennial. 
     The subjects were grouped by decades, from the 1820's through the 2010's.

 The well-planned day was sold out.
  Presenters had ten minutes each to show off artifacts from the archives collections representing those decades...

...including a futuristic 1959 TV featuring a screen that could sit apart from the guts of the TV (via a rather thick 25-foot long cable, of course). Watch a vintage TV commercial for it here.

     Most of the history was much more serious and significant, from the Civil War to The Civil Rights Movement.


ASU professor Bertis English talked about voting after the Civil War, discussing this "Perote Ballot Box"...

... while University of Montevallo History Professor Jim Day talked about the Alabama mining industry, illustrated by this "canary cage" from his own archives (a live-canary would give advance warning to gas buildup in a mine).

You can see many of the artifacts, and more, at The Museum of Alabama inside the archives.

Jun 14, 2019

Full Strawberry Moon Photos 6-14-19

Union Loss in Tennessee

The vote, 833 against the union to 776 for the UAW, was closer than the 2014 effort but still fell short.

The Times Free-Press reports:

"The Chattanooga VW plant assembles the Passat midsize sedan and Atlas SUV, employing about 3,500 people. This week's vote was the third union election in five years at the factory.
In 2014, the UAW lost an election by a margin of 712-626. About a year later, a smaller group of just maintenance workers approved the union by a vote of 108-44.
But the company refused to bargain with the unit, saying it wanted a vote of all production and maintenance workers. Last month, the union disavowed the smaller group and the NLRB approved the union's petition for the new election."

Bald Eagle swimming after too large of a catch - Alaska

I certainly never knew they could swim at all!

Gardeners be warned.....

A rare but dangerous garden pest is afoot. Or afin.

Take my Friday Fun click bait and
see the critter on  my photo pages HERE. (-:


A Much Earlier Wetumpka Disaster

From the NY Times, 6-15-1852

"The whole business part of the city was laid in ashes" (State Guard newspaper).

Wetumpka is still recovering from this year's tornado---five months ago next Wednesday---but 167 years ago today they were facing another destructive event....a huge fire that "destroyed...the entire business part of East Wetumpka".

Another newspaper report indicates one result of the fire is that all of the replacement buildings are made of brick:

Walking tours of the area are available.

Jun 13, 2019

State Health Report

"Deaths from Suicide, Alcohol, Drugs on the Rise; Progress Expanding Health Care Coverage Stalls; Health Costs Are a Growing Burden..."

                                                                                                (from a Commonwealth Fund Report)

Alabama remains in the bottom half of the states in this ranking, but not at the very bottom!

Ranking Highlights

2019 Rank Change from Baseline
Overall Ranking  38                              -1
Access and Affordability  35-3
Prevention and Treatment  30+6
Avoidable Hospital Use and Cost  34-3
Healthy Lives    46-2
Disparity  36-10
Medicaid Expansion  No


Jun 12, 2019

Alabama Now Has More Than 100 Varities of Car Tag!

The first Alabama vehicle tag---issued in 1912.

....and more are on the way all the time, according to the department of motor vehicles:

 'The Colon Cancer Awareness, Prostate Cancer Research, and Thank a Lineman plates have exceeded the minimum required number of pre-commitments and will be available for issuance beginning July 1, 2019. A shipment of plates will be ordered for each county based on the number of pre-commitments."

Three dozen of the specialty tags are for colleges. Many others are for non-profit groupsnd various kinds of veterans (from Sons of Confederate Veterans to eight varieties for WWII!)

See one list HERE.